Well-respected Brandon educator and Wheat Kings public address announcer Michael Adamski died on Saturday.
He was diagnosed with oligodendroglioma, a form of brain cancer, in October.
"It was always his goal to overcome this disease," brother Mark said. "Unfortunately, it was just a very aggressive cancer and it just took over."
News of Adamski’s passing broke during the weekend in the form of a strong wave of social media tributes that celebrated Adamski’s life as carrying a positive impact on countless people in his community.
Mark said that the outpouring of tributes from past students, those affiliated with the Wheat Kings and members of the community at large have been touching to read.
"It was very emotional to read all this stuff about what kind of impact he actually had on individuals," he said, adding that on more than one occasion he has heard from former students who credit their successes in life to Adamski pointing them in the right direction.
Adamski will "be sadly missed but never forgotten," Mayor Rick Chrest wrote in a tweet in which he also noted that hearts are being broken throughout the community on the news of his passing.
Crocus Plains Regional Secondary School Grade 12 student Michael Wenham wrote on Facebook that Adamski was "a true inspiration to so many" and is "respected by all who had the privilege to meet him."
In December, Wenham held a head shave fundraiser for the Canadian Cancer Society in Adamski’s honour at École secondaire Neelin High School, where Adamski served as principal before shifting to Vincent Massey.
By phone on Sunday, Wenham said that Adamski’s bravery throughout his cancer journey is something that merits respect.
"Throughout the entire thing he was pretty optimistic," Wenham said. "Even when he received bad news, he was optimistic and wanted to push through it and was fighting to the end."
Adamski’s positive outlook proves that "even through super hard times, you can be strong," Wenham said, adding, "he affected a lot of people, and everyone appreciates him."
The Brandon Sun last connected with Adamski in February, at which time the 56-year-old was in a Brandon Regional Health Centre palliative care room, where a steady stream of people were seen visiting him.
The Wheat Kings brought the WHL championship trophy to his room for a week and gave him an iPad to watch games.
Hospital staff, including many ex-students, fussed over him during his stay in hospital, including Jillian DeCosse, who compiled 23 video testimonials from graduates who shared their memories of him.
At the time, DeCosse remarked that the video merely "scratched the surface" of students positively impacted by the longtime educator.
Mark said that his brother lived his passions, as principal during the day and public address announcer during the evenings, with announcing another means of connecting with the game he loved.
Even when Adamski’s cancer progressed more quickly than anticipated, he kept up the fight with an optimism that Mark said would forever solidify his brother’s status as a role model.
"I’m just really proud of him," Mark said.
"I’m happy to be his brother and I know he gave it his all and I miss him."
Tuesday night’s Brandon Wheat Kings home game against the Swift Current Broncos will include a special tribute to Adamski.
» firstname.lastname@example.org, with files from Ian Froese
» Twitter: @TylerClarkeMB